Chasing Squirrels

“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.”

Buddha

A dog can teach you a lotta about living well. Okay, okay. Maybe not chasing squirrels or barking at everything that moves. But on second thought, maybe there’s a lesson or two there as well.

Dogs wear their emotions I’m on their sleeves. A dog may bark at a mailman (mail…person?) They may immediately stop what they are doing when you hold up a bright yellow tennis ball. And they may become hyper-focused if they hear the meow of a cat or rustle of something nearby. They feel, but they don’t bottle it inside. They react and release. We could yell at them for barking (at nothing), and they might be sad or down because we were stern to them, but only for a moment before they are ready to play. The only person that’s still flustered and angry is us. They forgive instantly. We hold offenses or even resentfulness in for years.

There’s something powerful about the instantaneous release of emotion. Not that being angry or barking out is good for us (it’s not). But letting it go is. Not letting the fear and anxiety and emotion own us. It’s part of who we are, but it doesn’t control us.

A dog can also go its entire life eating, sleeping pooping, playing and walking and be perfectly happy. I can go barely a day before I do something, read, learning something, create something. I guess creativity is my squirrel. I can easily pull myself in a million directions on any given day. I viscerally know how limited my time is today, but I still feel driven to try to learn, do and experience everything.

I think creativity is a fundamental component of what being human is. (And the people — maybe you — who don’t think they are creative just haven’t found a way or safe space to explore their creative side yet.) We are driven to explore, connect and create.

But as humans, we have a good and bad habit of never being satisfied with what we have. Good because it makes us better at what we do. Bad if it takes over and leaves us dissatisfied with what opportunity and joy we do have in front of us (if only we’d stop to see and appreciate it).

Yet a dog is rarely NOT satisfied. Even if they are not getting what they want out of the day, they don’t stay sad for long. They open themselves up to the opportunity of the day. Where everything can be seen from a new smell and perspective. Happiness is there, waiting for us to accept it.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,
— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #835

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Life on the edge: Are you uncomfortable enough?

Brilliance is born outside your comfort zone.

Doing the same things* you’ve been doing has gotten you where you are, but to take steps towards brilliance you must step further and further into your fear and the unknown.

*you know, those same old things

Life on the edge is where creativity and magic happens.
 

However, it’s the furthest away from being comfortable you can get.

Comfortable is staying at your job even though you hate it.

Comfortable is a nice warm bed that’s hard to get out of.

Comfortable is opting out of networking events because you don’t feel like it, or don’t like them.

Comfortable is not asking, not writing your book, not starting your business, not failing, not traveling, not asking that person out on a date, not leaving your house, not joining that race, and not doing X because of fear of Y.

If we’re not careful, comfortable is where we go to die.

We must learn to be comfortable with the uncomfortable if we ever want to make true impact and stride.

Learn to be comfortable in what makes you uncomfortable +

Uncomfortable, as in anything you know that’s probably good for you, but you find terrifying to do.

We all have similar, yet unique things that we find uncomfortable. What’s uncomfortable for me, might be easy for you, and vice versa. But the most universally uncomfortable things is anything to do with us standing out.

Isn’t it ironic that we want to stand out, but fear standing out.

 

Your task is to find what makes you uncomfortable and linger on them. Inhabit them. Learn to be comfortably* uncomfortable.

*to make up a word

What’s uncomfortable to us doesn’t usually go away, but it does lose it’s effect on us when we learn to sit with it. For example, you may always be scared of public speaking, but if you do it anyway, you’ll have control over your fear, vs it having control over you.

Being Comfortably Uncomfortable is about being in control of your fear instead it being in control of you.

Ask Yourself:

Q: What makes me uncomfortable?

Q: What am I not doing simple because I am sacred to do it and scared to stand out?

 

#KeepPursuing — Josh Waggoner | Renaissance Man | Updated: Jan 21st, 2017

‘Brevity is the soul of wit.’  Email me (josh@renaissancemanlife.com) your thoughts on this post. Can you reduce the essential idea further?

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related wisdom 

The further you get away from yourself, the more challenging it is. Not to be in your comfort zone is great fun.

— Benedict Cumberbatch

Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.

— Brian Tracy